My July aim of bettering last years 478km over July was quashed by Mrs biking2work spraining her ankle at netball earlier in the month. That week was spent ferrying the boys to school instead of my 1-2 rides to work so that she could rest it-she has a half marathon to run in September. So the month of August beckons with the hope of bettering 500km but events of this month have made me think that achievement is not about the distance travelled but the experience of what I’m doing on the bike. My last post of the school run is a case in point. Had I not been forced to think of alternatives then I don’t believe that I would have thought of doing things differently.
Anyway, this timely post while we camped on the Isle of Wight reminded me that I do have more gears at my disposal than the 3 that I normally use on my work routes. While I describe these routes as undulating, I suspect others would call them flat. I am sure that my description of the IoW as hilly would be countered as undulating by others but the value of climbing is not lost on me after our recent hols. We didn’t go on a cycling holiday but a family one but my calves, used to flat cycling disagree even though I only covered 50km in total.
The view from our campsite showed a monument on a hill known as Culver Down and I wanted to get up there. Get up there I did during a warm ride up an estimated 5% gradient during a 20km ride. I was instantly reminded of the benefits of cycling over running for fitness-you get to go further and potentially the views are better, especially if you have to climb.
I don’t know whether the distance that I travelled on my hilly holiday will make a difference to my speeds but definitely going to go further when able because I now know that, yes, I can use ALL of my gears to maintain the go forward without running out of energy…